Shopping Center Business

MAY 2015

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MAY 2015 • SHOPPING CENTER BUSINESS • 331 Jaime Lackey New England Development adds several outlet centers to its portfolio. A New Outlet For Long-time Retail Developer N ew England Development has developed successful retail proj- ects — ranging from street-front retail to large mixed-use projects — for more than 35 years. Today, the company is turning its expertise to the development of outlet centers. "As a company, New England Devel- opment tries to learn from each develop- ment we create. We stay on top of trends in the retail industry and evolve as a com- pany," says Douglass Karp, president of the Massachusetts-based company. In the last four years, New England De- velopment has begun to purchase sites for and develop outlet centers. How does this category fit into the company's portfolio of high-end retail, regional centers and mixed-use projects? The general concept of outlet centers has evolved, Karp notes. "Today's outlet centers offer consumers a better experience. In addition, some ten- ants offer products that are made specifi- cally for their outlet concepts — items that are not found anywhere else. This helps to make these centers great for everyday shoppers and not just tourists." He continues, "Over the years, we've seen more and more outlet centers devel- oped. We've watched the outlet centers evolve from afar and we moved into this space because it made sense with our Palm Beach project, which opened in February 2014," Karp says. "Palm Beach Outlets has been well received and we've taken the knowledge gained from that project and we are applying it to other projects." Recently Opened pROjects In Palm Beach County, Florida, New England Development developed an out- let center and a power center on 86 acres, and has the capacity to expand the outlet center by another 100,000 square feet. "This is a great location: great access, great demographics and a strong tourist popula- tion. The fundamentals were perfect for an outlet center; the site just needed new life," Karp says. (The previous mall on the site included four department stores.) The project is located at Exit 71 off Interstate 95, which sees daily traffic of 179,500 cars. Nearly 1.5 million people live within 30 miles of the site, and the av- erage household income is $80,000. An- other 150,000 people have second homes in the area and add to the consumer base six months out of the year. Additionally, 6 million people visit Palm Beach County annually. The 440,000-square-foot Palm Beach Outlets features 100 stores, including Saks Fifth Avenue OFF 5TH, Brooks Broth- ers, J.Crew / Crewcuts Factory, Ann Tay- lor Factory Store, Banana Republic Fac- tory Store, Kenneth Cole, Talbots, Under Armour Factory Store, and White House | Black Market The adjacent Marketplace at the Out- lets, which New England Development opened in October 2014, includes Nor- dstrom Rack; TJ Maxx; Ross Dress For Less; Sports Authority; Bed Bath & Be- yond; DSW Shoe Warehouse; PetSmart; and Old Navy. Whole Foods just opened at the project in March. "Whole Foods was the last piece of the center to open, and is a great draw for this market," Karp says. Palm Beach Outlets has been well re- ceived, and New England Development is looking to replicate the successful formula in markets across the U.S. In Asheville, North Carolina, the company partnered with Tremont Capital to redevelop a former enclosed mall past its prime into Asheville Outlets, a 325,000-square-foot center with 75 stores, including Ann Taylor Factory Store, Banana Republic Factory Store, Brooks Brothers Factory Store, Coach Outlet, Cole Haan, GAP Factory Store, J. Crew Factory, Nike Factory Store, Tommy Hilfiger, Under Armour, Vera Bradley Outlet, and West Elm Outlet. The project opened in early May, and a 50,000-square-foot Field & Scheduled for an opening in the second half of 2016 is New England Development's Outlets of Des Moines, a 300,000-square-foot project at the intersection of Interstate 80 and U.S. 65 in Altoona, Iowa. (continued on page 336)

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